On Selfishness

Women who are thinking of becoming a Single Mother by Choice (SMC) sometimes are told, or worry, that they are being selfish. Here are my thoughts on selfishness.

I am trying to conceive (ttc) and this is how I explain it to my friends when they ask.

My life as a single person is selfish.  My money, time and energy go to things that please me and to do things I enjoy.  Just one year ago I hopped on a plane and went to Nicaragua to learn to surf.  Everything I do every single day is for me.  Every single day is selfish and self centered.

I am not a selfish or self centered person in my heart, and this life is uncomfortable.  I don’t like doing things to merely entertain myself, but since I have no one in my life (husband or kid) to focus on, and as I was approaching my 40s, I found I was doing less and less to keep myself busy.  I would prefer to have a child to focus on, to love, and to spend my money, energy and time on.

I would love that complete selfLESSness that comes from being a mom – and I cannot wait to sacrifice so many things to focus on my kid.  I think having a child, being a mom, in whatever format, is the most unselfish thing a person can do.  Being a parent is unselfish. Wanting to watch a kid’s eyes light up when they learn something new, sees their first Christmas morning, or graduates from high school is not something that is selfish to desire.  It is me wanting to love and nurture, raise and teach another human being – as all people who want kids do.  Just because I am single does not mean this is selfish – it is human nature and the glory of the circle of life.

I remember first understanding that this was not selfish when I was in Italy, standing on a mountainside in Amalfi overlooking the beautiful scenery. My childless friend said, “we are so lucky!’ and all I could think of was how much I would rather have been home with a child/family.

Selfishness, for me, was being on that luxurious trip. Self LESS ness, for me, is raising a child.



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– Joyce Gabbert